The Stigma Of Female Athletes Essay

2380 Words Apr 24th, 2016 10 Pages
In the twentieth century, lesbianism has worked as a stigma against female athletes. This stigma has contributed to the disparities in gender which are well documented. Women in sports have challenged traditional gender roles and expectations. The inequalities extend to economics, equal pay and awards for tournaments and championships; equality in scholarships for women athletes, media hype and coverage of women’s athletics and professional sports as well as fair treatment. The many psychological and physiological benefits derived from engaging in athletics should not be denied to anyone based on race, age or gender. The stigma that exists unsettles and undermines the power and influence of women involved in sports. After a period of repression during the Victorian era, women had begun to “challenge Victorian gender arrangements- breaking down barriers to female participation in male arenas such as work, politics and urban nightlife: and some even sought entry into sports as well” The notion that women are termed “Amazons” or “ugly-ducklings” may seem ancient history, but insofar as that connotation has extended to “mannish” “butch” or lesbians, regardless of sexuality, proves that the stigma still exists today. In order to understand where the stigma and perception began, it’s critical to take a look back at some of the early pioneers in women’s athletics. Some are lesser known than others. Take, for example the words of athlete and journalist,…

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